Stanford Hospital's Pneumatic Tubes

Despite working for over 2 years in and around the Stanford Hospital building, I was completely unaware of the existence of a vast network of pneumatic tubes used to transport lab samples across the medical center. According to an article on the Med School website, this system consists of 4 miles of tubing laced behind the walls and is used 7,000 times a day, to shuttle footlong containers that can carry anything from blood to medication.

Apparently the use of a pneumatic tube system is not unique to Stanford, but ours is the largest, having "124 stations (every nursing unit has one); 141 transfer units, 99 inter-zone connectors and 29 blowers." The containers "can reach speeds of up to 25 feet per second, about 18 miles per hour".

For more information about Stanfords Pneumatic Tube delivery system, see the original article.

Has anyone every used this system to send materials?


Astra Bryant

Astra Bryant is a graduate of the Stanford Neuroscience PhD program in the labs of Drs. Eric Knudsen and John Huguenard. She used in vitro slice electrophysiology to study the cellular and synaptic mechanisms linking cholinergic signaling and gamma oscillations – two processes critical for the control of gaze and attention, which are disrupted in many psychiatric disorders. She is a senior editor and the webmaster of the NeuWrite West Neuroblog